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The History of Apple Turnovers

In honor of National Apple Turnover Day, we’re delving into the history behind this beloved dessert. Fruit-filled pastries and portable pies are thought to date back to the ancient world, making them thousands of years old. However, the exact origin of apple turnovers in unknown. The first printed recipe for “Apple Pasties to Fry” appears in an English cookbook dating back to 1753, but it is thought that apple turnovers may have been around for much longer; changing names and low literacy rates mean that recipes may have existed much earlier than 1753. For a while, apple turnovers were referred to as apple pies because apple was the most popular and most widely available filling. By the end of the 1700s, turnovers were being wrapped in puff pastry and referred to as “puffs” in the territory that would soon become the United States. Then in 1874, Cassell’s Dictionary of Cookery referred to them as fruit pasties or turnovers. In 1902, Mrs. Rorer’s New Cook Book featured a recipe for “apple turnovers.” From there, the name stuck and the dessert has only grown in popularity since!

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